Eagles

Source: Eagles' Rodney McLeod has surgery on MCL, done for season

Source: Eagles' Rodney McLeod has surgery on MCL, done for season

The Eagles are going to have to go the rest of the season without a big part of their defense. 

Rodney McLeod had surgery on Thursday morning to repair a torn MCL he suffered in Sunday’s game. His season is over, a league source told NBC Sports Philadelphia's Derrick Gunn. 

This is a huge loss for the Eagles. While Malcolm Jenkins is one of the Eagles’ best players, McLeod had been playing really well through three games and this is a big loss for the team. 

McLeod, 28, joined the Eagles before the 2016 season and has played nearly every game for them since then. He had six interceptions in his first two years in Philly and formed a strong duo with Jenkins. 

After Sunday’s game, McLeod said he felt OK and was walking without issue, but the subsequent tests obviously showed there was more damage than originally thought. Head coach Doug Pederson on Wednesday said he wasn’t ready to give an update on McLeod because the results from one final test had yet to come in. 

Without McLeod, the Eagles will have to rely on veteran Corey Graham. The 33-year-old signed with the Eagles during training camp to return for his second season with the Birds. He has been playing some, but will now become a starter. 

“It really don’t change much,” Graham said on Sunday night about possibly taking over a starter’s role. “We’re going to run our same packages, do the same thing we’ve been doing. Instead of playing 30 plays a game, I’ll play 60. It don’t really change too much for me. I’ll still be doing the same exact thing, but more.”

But with Graham sliding into a starting role, that means the Eagles’ third safety is either Deiondre’ Hall, who came via a trade before the season, or Tre Sullivan, who will probably be promoted from the practice squad. 

Without a third safety, the Eagles won’t be able to deploy Jenkins the way they have in past seasons. Jenkins, at times, has played nickel corner and even linebacker. 

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Eagles might lose executive Andrew Berry after all

Eagles might lose executive Andrew Berry after all

Just a few days ago, it seemed like the Eagles weren’t going to lose Vice President of Football Operations Andrew Berry because it looked like the Browns were going to hire someone else.

Well, that someone else has dropped out of the race.

Vikings assistant GM George Paton has taken himself out of the running to be the Browns’ next general manager, which means Berry is now the new favorite, according to Cleveland.com

This is certainly an interesting turn of events.

According to Cleveland.com, “Paton was reluctant to accept the initial interview because he assumed the job would go Berry.”

Now it might.

It would have made plenty of sense for the Browns to hire Paton, who has a long-standing relationship with new head coach Kevin Stefanski from their time together in Minnesota. But according to reports over the past few weeks, it seems like Berry has been a favorite of ownership and the front office.

While Berry and Stefanski have never worked together, they did get to know each other during the coaching search in Cleveland a year ago. After that search, the Browns hired Freddie Kitchens and Berry left for Philly. But now, Berry and Stefanski might actually get a chance to work with one another.

The Harvard-educated Berry, 32, was with the Browns from 2016-18 as their Vice President of Player Personnel before he joined the Eagles last season in a role they created for him. Berry initially came up in the Colts franchise, first as a scouting assistant and finally as a pro scouting coordinator. He’s been a quick-riser in the NFL world.

Earlier this offseason, the Eagles reportedly denied a request from the Panthers to interview Berry for a Vice President job. The reasoning from the Eagles was that it wasn’t a general manager position and he wouldn’t have had final say on personnel matters.

Final say is something Berry will likely never have here in Philadelphia. Despite a few missteps in recent years, Howie Roseman has pretty solid job security and he isn’t going anywhere. If Berry is going to become a GM, it’s going to be in another city. And it seems like that day might be coming soon.

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Lane Johnson says one awful Eagles game made him shave his head for good

Lane Johnson says one awful Eagles game made him shave his head for good

Lane Johnson is officially in offseason mode, and he kicked off Pro Bowl week - which he's now officially part of - by showing up on former teammate Chris Long's podcast and shooting the breeze for an hour.

The duo bantered about plenty, from dealing with failure and ego as football players, to Johnson's time as a grave digger. About halfway through, Johnson offered up a seldom-heard explanation for his hairstyle, or lackthereof.

Johnson, of course, famously keeps his hair short (read: nonexistent) on top, and keeps his beard long. He explained to Long that it took some serious self-reflection, and a couple rough games early in his rookie season, to officially start shaving his head:

I was in college, it was my senior year, and my friend goes, 'Bro, are you f***ing losing your hair?' I said, what are you talking about? Then I went to the mirror, and I'd clearly been in denial for some time. I said, 'Bro, this s*** is terrible.' 

So I played with it my senior year, it was bad. I'd comb it over, wear my hats, feather it out in the back, try to look cool. Then I got to the Eagles, and after getting bull-rushed by Dwight Freeney and giving up three sacks to Justin Houston, I just shaved that s*** off. I've been a different man ever since.

The Eagles, you might remember, lost in Week 2 that year to Freeney's Chargers, and then lost in Week 3 to Houston's Chiefs, to fall to 1-3. They went 9-3 the rest of the way, a startling and fun turnaround. I'm not saying it's all thanks to Johnson shaving his head... but maybe?

That's about as good a reason as I can think of to make a hairstyle change. Johnson has been one of the best right tackles in the NFL since he started shaving his head, so maybe he's on to something. He spends very little time focusing on his hair, and plenty of time focusing on his game.

When you go back and look at Johnson with hair, it's... extremely jarring:

Johnson is basically unrecognizable in that video. He looks like a child! Thank goodness for Freeney and Houston shellacking Johnson as a rookie, or he might still be clinging to that brutal hairdo.

Maybe Johnson should've floated this idea to the Eagles' coaching staff years ago. Who knows what a haircut could've done for Nelson Agholor?

You can listen to, and watch, the full conversation between Johnson and Long below:

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